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Winter Ecology

BIO 116W

Winter Ecology

BIO 116W

Course Description

Prerequisites: Prerequisites: READING LEVEL 2, WRITING LEVEL 2 AND MATH LEVEL 2.

Explores the adaptations and coping behaviors of organisms and communities to the additional stresses placed on them by winter. Includes such major topics as: weather and climate, hibernation, freezing avoidance, community changes, and behavior of animals. Includes identification of plants, animal tracks, insect galls, bird nests, and various kinds of snow conditions. Requires a weekend field trip. Student must pay own expenses. (30-0)

Outcomes and Objectives

Participate in the process of science.

Objectives:

  • Make observations
  • Design experiments.
  • Conduct experiments.
  • Formulate and test hypotheses.
  • Collect data.
  • Analyze data.
  • Draw Conclusions
  • Report results.
  • Explain the evaluation and revision process of science.

Describe various factors that influence the kind of biotic community that will develop in a region of the world.

Objectives:

  • Identify physical and biological characteristics of the temperate deciduous forests, boreal forests and tundra.
  • Relate the physical environment of temperate deciduous forest, boreal forest, and tundra to kinds of plants and animals that live in the regions.

Perform writing tasks to promote learning.

Write effectively for a specific audience and purpose.

Work collaboratively with classmates.

Objectives:

  • Participate in field activities with 1-3 classmates.
  • Share the workload of small group activities.
  • Share the responsibility of acquiring, cleaning and putting away laboratory and field equipment.
  • Share ideas and respectfully receive the ideas of classmates.

Competently communicate about environmental topics.

Objectives:

  • Read critically.
  • Write effectively.
  • Listen actively.
  • Speak effectively.
  • Develop and interpret graphs and flow charts.
  • Compile a log of activities and impressions obtained in outdoor settings in winter.

Demonstrate the ability to think critically.

Objectives:

  • Integrate concepts.
  • Solve problems.
  • Draw logical conclusions.
  • Make predictions based on experience.
  • Identify trends and patterns.
  • Distinguish between simple correlation and cause-and-effect.

Demonstrate appropriate preparation to participate in outdoor field activities in the winter.

Objectives:

  • Plan field activities and select and use appropriate equipment to conduct the field activities.
  • Select appropriate clothing and equipment for winter weather.
  • Demonstrate safe and appropriate behavior while conducting field activities.
  • Identify organisms and their activities in the field.
  • Measure and characterize physical environmental characteristics.
  • Report the results of outdoor studies conducted during the class.

Describe why we have a seasonal climate and how winter is different from other seasons.

Objectives:

  • Describe how the tilt of the earth's axis and the earth's movement contribute to the seasonal nature of our climate.
  • State major physical environmental changes that characterize winter.
  • Describe the impact of various kinds of precipitation on organisms during winter.

Describe structural, physiological, and behavioral adjustments organisms make to survive winter.

Objectives:

  • Describe how annual, biennial and perennial herbaceous plants survive winter.
  • State the different mechanisms used by woody perennials to avoid damage during winter.
  • Compare deciduous and coniferous trees and the mechanisms they use to survive winter.
  • Characterize the different strategies used by poikilotherms, homeotherms and hibernators to survive winter.

Describe changes that occur in ecosystems during winter.

Objectives:

  • Describe how populations of organisms change during winter.
  • State examples of changed behavior of animals that is related to winter.
  • Describe reasons why ecosystems are simplified during winter.
  • Relate the reproductive cycles of organisms to seasonal climates that include a winter period.

Describe how living organisms, non-living matter, and energy are interconnected.

Objectives:

  • Identify the abiotic and biotic factors in an ecosystem.
  • Describe the niche concept.
  • List components of an ecosystem.
  • Describe the role of producer, herbivore, carnivore, scavenger, parasite, and decomposer in an ecosystem.
  • Describe energy flow in an ecosystem.
  • Relate the concept of food web an flood chain to trophic levels.
  • Recognize that the process of natural selection operates to refine the fit between an organism and its habitat.